The Power of Spirit through the Practice of Yoga
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SPIRITUAL PRACTICE: TANTRISM
Trika Yoga, the spiritual practice at Nityananda Institute, is a Tantric tradition. The term Tantrism refers to a current found in both Hinduism and Buddhism. While what's emphasized in Tantric Hinduism differs somewhat from what Tantric Buddhism emphasizes, the two strands share common elements. In general, Tantrism is extraordinary in its acceptance of the world, and the events and experiences that happen therein, viewing all these as complete and appropriate aspects of life. A person's life experiences become the arena within which he or she cultivates spiritual understanding. Unlike many traditions which have erected taboos and ritual prohibitions, the Tantric traditions recognize that no area of life is to be rejected. The experience of freedom, spontaneity, creativity, and well-being in this lifetime are what a Tantric practitioner is intent upon gaining.
In the Tantric tradition, salvation is not about forming a business deal with God in which we promise to do something in exchange for something we want. Rather, salvation is about finding that sweet, beautiful place within us that is also very special and powerful. You may have experienced this place in various moments in your life, but the idea in this practice is not only finding it, but living from this place every single day. This is a place where life flows deeply within us, and where we are completely flowing in life. From this experience, we can feel that our life has been saved. And in this state, the Self is not limited to this physical body, but is expanded to the whole of our physical experience and beyond.
There are two predominant traditions within Hindu Tantrism, Shaiva and Shakta, derived from the names of the two aspects of consciousness-Shiva and Shakti. Shiva refers to the pure awareness of consciousness while Shakti refers to the vital creative impulse of consciousness. At the same time, Shiva and Shakti are recognized as ultimately one and the same. Shiva is one of the oldest human experiences and expressions of God, often being depicted as the Lord of Creation and Destruction, the fundamental rhythm of all of life. Shakti is often depicted as Shiva's consort, suggesting that pure consciousness and creative energy are inseparable and ultimately one and the same.
- More about spiritual practice at Nityananda Institute:
- General Introduction
- Kashmir Shaivism
- Trika Yoga
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